Net2Text takes as input network-related questions expressed in English
The operator can express her query in natural language fragment consisting of multiple network features (e.g., ingress, egress, destination, shortest path) and network specific values (e.g., New York, Google).
The natural language fragment is easily extensible with new features, keywords and names. Currently, Net2Text supports four types of queries: yes/no, counting, data retrieval and summarization.
Net2Text uses various data from the networkThe network database contains all information pertaining to the network. In the current version, Net2Text uses the network-wide forwarding state and traffic statistics.
Net2Text's engine summarizes the data pertaining to the queryThe Net2Text engine consists of three modules. The first module is the parser, which translates the operator's query to an internal query language. This query is then executed on the network database. The resulting database entries are passed to the last module of Net2Text: the summarization module. This module tries to find a summary of the data that strikes a balance between explainability (how much details the summary provides) and coverage (how many of the entries the summary describes).
Net2Text provides the answer summary in English to the operatorUltimately, the summary is presented to the network operator.
Net2Text in Action
Try Net2Text on the AT&T North America topology from Topology Zoo using a generated data plane that varies over time.
Queries are made up of two main elements: the query type and the traffic identifier. The query type determines the answer: whether it is a summary ("How..."), a list ("What"), or a number ("How many"). The traffic identifier determines which are part of the network state should be considered in the answer (egress "to ...", ingress "from ...", destination "for ...").